From Publishers Weekly
Vampires have problems, too, as shown in Fox's clever, wisecracking debut that never quite works as the tragicomedy it aspires to be. Taxi-driving vampire Jules Duchon weighs 350 pounds and is still gaining from drinking the blood of the citizens of New Orleans, whose rich, unhealthy diets are teeming with fatty lipids. Obesity's not his only problem. A flashy new black vampire in town-Malice X, a Superfly with fangs-has taken over his turf. Jules turns to Maureen, the super-sized stripper who "made" him for help, and Mo eventually calls on Jules's ex-buddy Doodlebug ("D.B.") for more aid. D.B., a lithe transvestite vampire who has had great success in California as a self-reliance guru, wisely allows Jules to follow his own path-for a while. When it becomes apparent that Jules has a lot to learn about being a vampire, D.B. is there to guide him. While the author pays obvious homage to A Confederacy of Dunces, the humor here fails to rise above the sitcom level. Jules is just plain dumb and his miseries are usually self-inflicted. Characters are mostly caricatures. Relationships and plot complexities-Jules's moral dilemma concerning his victims, his comic-book hero secret identity as the Hooded Terror with D.B. as his sidekick, his plan to turn a band of white supremacists into vampires-don't satisfactorily entwine. Although by the end a lot of blood has been spilled and Jules has learned his lesson in unlife, there's little of real substance to sink your teeth into.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
*Starred Review* Poor Jules Duchon. It isn't easy being a vampire in New Orleans. Potential victims' blood is filled with fat from the rich local cuisine, and so Jules is a whopping 463 pounds. He would like to diet, but, really, his life isn't too bad--until he walks into his house and finds tough-talking black vampire Malice X waiting for him. Annoyed that Jules has been feeding off black victims, Malice tells him to stick to his own kind. Shaken, Jules turns to his stripper ex, Maureen, the vampire who made him. She is as overweight as Jules and can't bear to have him around because he reminds her of her own heft. So she sends him to the High Crewe of Vlad Tepes, but they have "modernized" and no longer need to crudely hunt for victims. Things just get worse for Jules. The police confiscate his car, and after he feeds off a black mugger, Malice X retaliates by burning down his house. Jules briefly flees town but comes back and, with the help of Maureen and Doodlebug, a cross-dressing vampire whom Jules sired, he stands up to Malice X--not without dire and tragic consequences. Jules is an often hapless hero, but a sympathetic one, and readers of vampire fiction will delight in this droll parody of the genre. Kristine HuntleyCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved